Photo by Sharif Khalje

Photo by Sharif Khalje


Karen Kubey is an urbanist specializing in housing and health. She curates and produces exhibitions and designs, edits and contributes to publications, and builds and leads initiatives and organizations.

Karen's recent project partners include the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, the New York City Department for the Aging, and the New York City Housing Authority. As the first executive director of the Institute for Public Architecture, Karen helped build a public interest design nonprofit with a national presence. Through exhibitions, roundtables, and its residency program for design practitioners, the IPA has become a catalyst for ambitious, achievable design ideas in the public interest.

Karen is a recipient of the Independent Projects Grant from the New York State Council on the Arts and was a Wilder Green Fellow at The MacDowell Colony. She has curated exhibitions at New York's Center for Architecture and the Canadian Centre for Architecture. She has taught design studios at Pratt Institute and Parsons The New School for Design. Her projects have been featured in The New York Times and her work has been exhibited at the Museum of the City of New York. 

Trained as an architect at the University of California, Berkeley, and Columbia University, Karen began her career in affordable housing design. She co-founded both the Architecture for Humanity New York chapter (now Open Architecture/New York) and New Housing New York, the city's first design competition for sustainable and affordable housing.


karen [at]